Making the 'Net Work for the Networksby Audrey Stone on August 20, 2010
Many studies show TV and radio networks are in trouble these days due to advertisers increasingly shifting their budgets to social media and other untraditional forms of advertising. Is the sky falling for our network friends? Simply put, no. As a matter of fact, many believe there is an unprecedented opportunity for TV and radio audience engagement like none other because of our culture’s escalating utilization of social media.
According to a recent Nielsen study, surfing the internet while watching television is increasingly becoming the norm. Simultaneously, savvy TV and radio programming encourage viewers/listeners to visit their stations website, join their Facebook pages, and follow them on Twitter. This trend is growing and it’s easy to see why—we now see fans of hit shows posting or tweeting their reactions to plot developments in real time—as they watch.
A great example of the power of integrating social media within TV programming is a post made on the day of the Lost finale. Just one post resulted in 20,166 “likes” and 19,483 comments. The dialogue found on this page not only represents the excitement people had for the show, it offers perspective of the amount of people that tuned in and provided show producers with feedback from their fans, both in real-time.
Consider this: most networks heavily rely on Nielsen studies to determine their audience size but this data can only claim that the television or radio station was dialed-in at a certain time of a program. Nielsen studies can’t provide data on the level of engagement the audience has, the thoughts and feedback of their fan base, or whether or not the viewer(s) were even watching or listening to the program at all. Given these facts, integration of social media within programming can result in vast success and undoubtedly changes the game for broadcast producers and media researchers alike.
The power of the media rapidly integrating with one another will only continue to be exceptionally beneficial to businesses looking to thoroughly engage with their target audience. With these types of changes in this industry, the sky isn’t falling—the sky is the limit.